I've traced the Edwards family to a freed slave in Duplin county named Peter Edwards. He was mulatto (the son of his master and his slave mother) and was freed by his master/owner (Matthew Edwards)in the early 1800s. His emancipation papers are in the state archives and are transcribed in my tree. They live in a community of free African Americans; I haven't seen any evidence that this family is Native American. The Edney Jane Basden that I have in this tree was never legally married to Henry Edwards (due to race and due to the fact that she was gaining a widow's pension from her first husband, who died in the Civil War) and was descended from the (white) Lightborn Basden family in Onslow County.
I'd be happy to answer any questions you might have!